August 7, 2014 – 7:49AM
Breaking news reporter
Five teenagers have been arrested over a racist attack on a bus full of young Jewish students as they travelled home from school in Sydney’s eastern suburbs.
Victor Dominello, the Minister for Citizenship and Communities, said he was “deeply disturbed” by reports that a group of teenagers had terrorised students as young as five years old as their school bus travelled between Randwick and Bondi Junction on Wednesday afternoon.
Police allege the offenders got on the bus on Darley Road in Randwick about 3.50pm and, as the bus travelled towards Bondi Junction, they racially taunted and made physical threats to the children.
The children’s parents later told police that the offenders, who were possibly drunk at the time, yelled insults such as “kill the Jews” and “free Palestine” during their assault, which one police officer described as an “horrific” incident of bullying and intimidation.
Police said the children were all aged between five and 12 years old and, while they were not physically harmed, they were traumatised by the event. About 30 children from Jewish schools in Sydney’s eastern suburbs, including Mount Sinai College and Emanuel School, were on the bus at the time.
The alleged offenders got off the bus on Bronte Road at Bondi Junction. A number of children called their parents, who met them at Bondi Junction and called police.
A NSW Police spokeswoman said five teenagers were arrested at 3.30am on Thursday and were questioned by police about the incident. They were then released into the custody of their parents. No charges have been laid and the police investigation is ongoing.
Mr Dominello said public abuse and intimidation on the grounds of race or religion was “deplorable”.
“The people of NSW will never excuse it and those who are alleged to have subjected school children as young as five to this anti-Semitic attack should face the full force of the law,” he said.
“We are lucky to live in one of the most harmonious multicultural societies in the world but we must never be complacent. It is incumbent upon all citizens to expose those whose actions are based on racial hatred and who seek to import overseas conflict onto our streets.”
The attack is believed to have occurred on a State Transit Authority bus that had been hired out privately for the school run. Police are investigating why the bus stopped to pick up the teenage thugs along Darley Road.
The bus was also believed to have CCTV cameras on board, and police will review that footage, which has not yet been publicly released.
Police said in a statement that officers from the Eastern Suburbs local area command were investigating the incident.
“While the event is not believed to be targeted, police have confirmed appropriate action will be taken against the alleged offenders once found, and any type of racial abuse, especially where young children are involved, will not be tolerated,” the statement said.
The teenagers are described as being aged between 15 and 17 years old and “of Caucasian appearance”.
Kids are consumers of media. Parents need to talk to their kids, and explain the difference between compassion for Palestine, and hating people for being Jews. They are not the same.
stupid teens, must be bogans
The teenagers were taken into custody but were too drunk for police to interview. They were left in their parents’ care and were expected to be interviewed later today
Drunken bogan teens, yep. Must have been found on private property to not get put in the drunk tank
Inappropriately bigot-ish comments here from yahya and Dave.
Why automatically assume these teens had to be ‘bogans’?
Well, my definition of ‘bogan’ would by definition include drunken teenagers who hurl racial abuse, and the parents who raise them.
By all reports, the kids were Caucasian in appearance, the media would have had no problem of describing them as middle-eastern if that were the case.
Drunken upper/upper-middle class teenagers (Eastern suburbs of Sydney). Ne’er has there been a group with such an inflated sense of self-entitlement
Clarity please, is being Jewish racial or a religious identity? Same as bigots cry Muslim isn’t a race I would like to know because these young people don’t need to suffer the sins of their ancestry and current opinion of Israel and it’s genocide in Gaza and greater Palestine, but that is another thing altogether, the deplorable and condoned treatment and references to Palestinians and Arabs as cattle and politicians advocating “solutions” and killing them and their mothers so no more little snakes are born smacks of hypocrisy from a collective of people who called NEVER AGAIN, but I guess it only applied to them not goyim or Arab cattle? I have little time for beheading jihadi’s but Palestinians are under occupation, in an open air prison after having the British promise them a homeland in the Balfour Declaration, have a right to retaliate and a few bottle rockets made from plumbing supplies don’t really have an impact on Israel and its mighty US taxpayer funded defence force…but I digress it is a crime happening in real time and a few kids ona bus (as bad as that is for them) don’t compare to that innocent child carried by her father with the top of her head opened up like a cantaloupe!
Ryan, your definition of ‘defending itself’ is somewhat astonishing. So, when they kill children, that’s self defence ? Do you have any of idea how many Israeli children have died as a result of recent fighting, and how many Palestinians ?
The real issue here is why was Abbott happy to erase 18C from the Anti-Discrimination legislation when Indigenous people were the target, but he promptly drops it as soon as another minority becomes the focus of bigots? The ‘right to be a bigot’ only applies when you can push around the poor and powerless eh Tony?
And the sad part is, these “people” who vilify others because of their religion, are probably atheists and only hate because they are of a religion which isn’t the one they renounce….stupid